Friday, February 22, 2013

Modern jail proposed for Fazilka dist

Praful Chander Nagpal

Fazilka, February 18
Following the seizure of narcotics and other banned items, and an increase in the number of prisoners at the sub-jail here, a modern jail has been proposed for the district headquarters.

The proposal to replace the 133-year-old sub-jail, which has been housing the prisoners of Abohar and Jalalabad sub-divisions also, with a district-level modern jail came after the elevation of Fazilka as district headquarters about 20 months ago.

Surinder Singh, a senior architect from the office of the Chief Architect, Punjab, accompanied by a team of local officials, conducted a survey of the sites for the proposed jail.

The team visited a location four km away from here and falling under villages Rampura and Banwala Hanuwanta on the National Highway. The land measuring about 15- acres is owned by the panchayats of the two villages.

Further, the team visited a site measuring about 20 acres at Salemshah village on the outskirts of the town.

"The final decision on the site shall be taken after receipt of a report from the office of the Chief Architect, Punjab," said Fazilka additional deputy commissioner Charandev Singh Maan.

The proposed modern jail shall have the capacity to house 1,000 prisoners. The jail shall have different projects and agricultural fields to keep the jail inmates busy.

The present jail at Fazilka came into existence in 1880. It was upgraded to a sub-jail on September 12, 1957.

The sub-jail, which is meant to accommodate 48 inmates, has remained overcrowded for the past several years. With setting up of the courts of additional district and sessions judge at Fazilka about two months ago, the number of inmates has risen.

Official sources said presently, around 130 inmates were lodged in the jail. The strength of watch and ward staff and the security personnel to take the prisoners for their appearance in the courts, however, continues to be the same.

"It is difficult to manage an overcrowded jail and meet the needs of the inmates," said Deputy Superintendent of the sub-jail, Sucha Singh.

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